SHAW-EDE T.E. Lawrence's Letters to H.S. Ede 1927-1935. Forward and Running Commentary by H.S. Ede

SHAW-EDE T.E. Lawrence's Letters to H.S. Ede 1927-1935. Forward and Running Commentary by H.S. Ede

(London: The Golden Cockerel Press, 1942).

RARE FIRST EDITION IN THE LIMITED ISSUE IN HANDSOME BINDING. "Shaw" of course was the name T.E. Lawrence used when he enrolled in the R.A.F. The relationship between Lawrence and Ede was a mutually satisfying one. Over forty letters are included here. The intimacy of feelings expressed by Ede is quite remarkable. He had taken little heed of T.E. Lawrence and the works penned by him and which had brought such great notoriety and honour. But in May 1927 when the illustrations for Seven Pillars were being exhibited at the Leicester Galleries, Ede read the introduction that T.E. had written for the catalogue and then, as he says in his own words, "Something in the English, some manner of arrangement, gripped me, and I went on reading with growing excitement. I was taken into my own intimate world, a world of singleness, isolation and yet of oneness with all life. I have always felt this way when I have realised beauty; a sound, an early morning, sunlight on a wasll; makeing for me an embodiment of that experience presented in the passing of the Graal. That was the beginning, and it was the more srange and sudden since I had felt so scornful...Here was a human being with vibrant human feelings, and yet not human, since he waa so much alone; an Olympian purposefulness and command, and at the same time so fine a fragility, so piercing a need for protection." Ede stepped clear, as he would say, of the Legend...he felt that he could help Lawrence to again live in some kind of normal way, and that he could help him to confidence. He wrote Lawrence telling him of these things, addressing him as "Dear Shaw" and addressing his letter to 'T.E. Shaw, R.A.F., Whitehall, London. A month later Lawrence's reply came, and the long correspondence was begun. The letters are elegant and purposeful, and at the same time prove Lawrence's vulnerability and fragility. The beauty of the writing is absolute (an example is given below) and Ede's commentary, quite brilliant in its own way.
"16/vi/27
Dear Ede
I feel nervous. I'm an entirely ordinary person: nearly everybody is. There are 14 fellows in this room with me, and we are all, at once, of a muchness, and different. If you were here you would be the 15th (and an unlucky fifteenth, for there are only fourteen beds !) and that's all there would be to it.
When I wrote that book of mine I was trying very hard to da a thing for which I am totally unfitted by nature:---to produce a work of creative imagination---and the strain of the unnatural effort came into the print, and affects people. At least that's the only explanation I can give..."
And further examples from Revolt, the copy which Ede read:
"Rain came on, and soaked me, and thenit blew fine and freezing till I crackled in armour of white silk, like a theatre knight: or like a bridal cake, hard-iced"
"The relief of the grass to our eyes after the daylong hard glitter of pebbles was so sudden that involuntrily I glanced up to see if a cloud had not covered the face of the sun."
SHAW-EDE is a splendid work, The letters will often astound the reader, their emotion and clarity almost a tactile experience in reading.
. Item #30559

First Edition and One of 500 copies only, printed in Perpetua type on mould-made paper and bound in fine half blue Niger morocco over cloth covered boards. 4to, beautifully bound in green-blue crushed Niger morocco over buckram covered boards by Sangorski and Sutcliffe, the spine with raised bands, two compartments lettered in gilt, t.e.g. [1-bl], 62, [2-bl], pp. A very handsome copy indeed, the binding tight, sharp and in excellent condition, the text-block clean and crisp, a small spot to the front cover and only very minimal evidence of age or use.

Price: $650.00